Updated: Jan 18
Hello Dear Reader,
Happy Monday and welcome back to the blog. I hope you've had a wonderful and relaxing weekend, and that you feel ready to take on yet another week in this crazy 2020 we've been experiencing.
Today, I wanted to take some time to discuss perfectionism because it's something I know many of you struggle with. And it's something I struggle with daily.
Many of you know about my love of Desperate Housewives character Bree Van de Kamp, but what you don't know is that the main reason I resonate with her so much, is because I can seriously relate to her perfectionist tendencies.
Yes, I've been known to have my entire day ruined if my cake didn't rise properly, or cry my eyes out if I didn't book a role that I wanted and worked hard for. I've restricted and counted calories to the point of exhaustion, and deleted entire videos if one hair was out of place.
Perfectionism has caused me to struggle with disordered eating, it's crept its way into my relationships, and ultimately caused me to put forth an image of myself that I wanted people to see. Instead of just being myself.
While I still have some of these daily struggles, I've grown so much from the 21 year old who only ate 900 calories a day.
Do I still freak out if my adventures in baking go terribly wrong? Yes.
But as I inch closer to becoming a wife and a mom, I know that this is something I'll need to get a hold of. I can only imagine how the stress of wanting to be the perfect mom who whips up cookies from scratch for the school bake sale or the perfect wife who greets her husband in lingerie with a home cooked meal might creep in to my daily life. And while I will strive to do both of those things, I'm also not delusional enough to think that I will be that "perfect" woman every day of my life.
So I've been working on ways to manage when I'm not perfect. Which is obviously 100% of the time.
Here are some of the ways I deal with perfectionism.
1. I constantly remind myself to keep things in perspective.
My perfectionism usually rears its ugly head when something small doesn't go my way. Maybe my skin is breaking out or my ice cream didn't come out exactly how I wanted it to. These are very, very small things in the grand scheme of life and of my existence here on Earth. When I remind myself of how blessed and fortunate I am, little things don't bother me as much. How can I be upset about my ice cream maker, when there are children who consider ice cream the greatest of luxuries? How can I be upset about a pimple, when there are people with untreatable skin cancers and diseases? Keeping life in perspective causes you to get off your soap box, stop whining, and focus on ways you can help others.
2. I remind myself that no one ever said life was going to be easy.
For some reason, many of us live with this notion that life won't come with its own set of challenges. Or maybe you don't, but I certainly used to. I grew up very privileged, and was protected from bad things. It wasn't until I experienced the death of my Grandma (which I've talked about before), that I truly looked at life as something that could be painful. Life isn't meant to be a cake walk. There will be challenges, big and small. Everything from dealing with death or divorce in your family, to trying to get your kids to eat broccoli. Life is beautiful, and we can romanticize it as much as possible. But there will always be struggles that we have to deal with and manage as we go throughout life.
3. I learned to adjust my standards.
As a content creator, I'm constantly in awe of the perfectly curated homes and feeds of other creators. Their bright white and perfectly cleaned kitchens, primed and ready for a viral Tik Tok or Reelz video to take place, often makes me feel less in comparison. It makes what I have feel like it's not enough. But I've learned to adjust my standards. No I may not have the perfect YouTube ready kitchen, but I can work with what I do have. I may not have a perfect bedroom where everything is "a vibe" but I've learned to just show my life as it is. Because while my messy bedroom that I've lived in for 20+ years may not be perfectly curated with matching furniture, it's mine. And I'm grateful for it. I learned to create my own standard, and not compare to the standards of others.
4. I focus on progress.
I've also discussed this in videos before, but learning to focus on my progress instead of what I haven't yet achieved helps me manage my perfectionist tendencies. I often find myself writing down things I've accomplished, and focusing my energy there, and not on the things that I haven't done. Maybe I haven't mastered baking with yeast, but I sure can make a good Chocolate Chip Cookie. Focusing on the things I CAN do, instead of the things I can't do, always keeps my perfectionism in check.
Well loves, that's all I have for you today. Let's go forth with the knowledge that we are worthy, we have value, and no matter if everything goes exactly to plan or not, we are so fortunate to be alive.
I love you all so very much.